We interviewed Sarah Griffiths, local to Shropshire, children’s author, and creative learning director at EYFSHome to discuss how she came to be a children’s author and the amazing work she has done with us thus far.
Sarah is the founder of ‘Enriching Young Minds’ - an enterprise that teaches children the importance of self-esteem, self-empowerment, and emotional wellbeing through story telling. Four of her children’s books are top 10 Amazon best sellers, specially crafted to engage children’s imaginations and inspire them to make their own happiness.
1. Why did you want to be a children's author?
My interest in literature started when I was incredibly young, my parents would read stories every night and regularly take me to the library. My mum said I would write books, staple them together and even do my own illustrations! As I got older, I wrote poems in birthday cards, and loved to rhyme things. When I became a teacher, I opened back up to that beautiful world of storytelling again. I had my own class and thought it would be amazing if I could share my own stories with them. I started writing down ideas and connected with a fellow parent and author who put me in touch with Team Author UK - before I knew it, the hobby turned into a dream come true.
2. Out of the stories you have written, do you have a favourite?
My favourite story has to be Sophie’s Spectacles. This one is very special because it is the first of my stories about wellbeing, as part of a series I’ve written called Wellbeing For Life. Sophie is based on a 7 year old girl I used to teach who was good at lots of things but could never see her talents. That's why I wanted to write this story, because I met so many Sophie's whilst teaching that had special gifts yet never thought they were good enough. In the book, Sophie is given a pair of spectacles that help her to see the attributes within herself and the gifts her friends posses. My aim with this story was to teach young children to celebrate their amazing and unique qualities.
3. How do you share the messages in your stories to engage children?
As an author and a teacher, I tend to base my main characters on children I've taught with them having to overcome something making it very relatable for young children and families too. I like to weave a bit of magic into each story to keep it engaging, exciting, and memorable. I create workshops for schools that I teach alongside the stories which I've built into a framework that I call the magic formula. These workshops focus on gratitude, meditation, and affirmations with daily practises to support your happiness and success in life.
4. How are your stories linked?
They are all part of the Wellbeing For Life series which consists of; Sophie's Spectacles which is about self esteem, Jack and the Genie which teaches inner guidance, and Finding Stones for Grandma which features my daughter practising meditation. These are the three books currently published but I have another to add to the series coming this year called When the Fireflies Came focussing on the power of the mind and the connection between our thoughts and our emotions.
5. What key aspirations do you hope to spark in children?
I want to teach children about that inner strength, that sense of self belief, and how to recognise from a young age what they are good at. When they unlock this, they can succeed at anything they put their mind too. It's important during early development that they grow these skills and values because it will shape who they are and help them reach their full potential.
6. What do you like about EYFSHome?
It is such an honour to work with EYFSHome and an amazing opportunity for my creative and teaching communities to come together to support young children's education. It is such a joy to see our team creating content that embraces experiential learning and supports that network of parents, carers, and nursery practitioners.
7. How do you think this platform will engage children?
The content is video based and interactive, the activity creators are talking directly to the children. We try to make it feel like we are there with them as they follow along. It's a great way to engage not just the young children but the siblings and families too.
8. What content did you enjoy making the most with us?
My favourite activity was festival day, which my daughter Eva was equally as excited about! I have a musical family, my dad plays the guitar and my sister is a singer so this was the perfect opportunity to get the whole family involved and encourage others to celebrate the summer. We spent the day in the garden singing, playing music, and dancing. There were crafts involved too, we made bunting and my daughter Eva painted the design based on what summer meant to her. To round it off, we did face painting and a BBQ - it was such a wonderful day and we hope it inspires other families to try recreating a festival at home.
9. What would you say to other authors thinking about making content for EYFSHome?
I would say definitely go for it! If you have a story that you would like to share with young children, this is a beautiful platform to use. It will reach thousands of children alongside a full day of activities to link with your message. It has been one of the best things I've ever done and you will learn so much about yourself too!
Watch a clip from the full interview of Sarah Griffiths sharing her thoughts on the Royal Foundations initiative to support early years.
Sarah Griffiths Children's Author